This has been a week hasn’t it? I’ve been around the houses in my mind about so many things and then put myself firmly back in my safe circle. I hope you’ve been able to find clam and contentment of some sort in the middle of all of this.
You are doing a fabulous job being exactly who you are and holding everyone together as well.
This week, I have been really aware of my babies and the effect all this worry is having on them. Not that I’ve never not been aware of them but it has felt very real this week. They went back to school – for which I am grateful – being with their friends is so hugely important for their mental health and feelings of positivity – I cannot replace friends of their own age.
Grace had a university entrance exam on Thursday and Neave was 14 last Sunday. All these milestones passing us by in the middle of this global storm. I’m sure that you have had to mange milestones in completely different ways to those you envisioned. I want to let you know that it is ok. You being there is enough for your babies.
I have learned in my years of mothering that we will all make mistakes. Poor Gracie, she’s the oldest so she bears the brunt of those. You learn about parenting as you do it and mistakes are inevitable. Your baby is going to fall off the bed (both mine did), your baby is going to be upset when things don’t go her way and you cannot be there for them each time they fall (literally or otherwise) and they will fall in many ways. Your heart will break – sometimes more than once a day.
You will be ok and they will be ok.
Someone told me once, when I was panicking about being a rubbish mother and letting the girls down over something, that if you act from a place of love you can do no harm. Those words gave me such comfort that they have become one of my personal mantras.
I am pretty 100% certain that you always parent from a place of love. That is enough.
I came across these quotes from Emily W King this week and wanted to share them with you as images because I think they will help you to feel better. She is worth following.
Stability, connection, routine, play and laughter. I bet you do all or almost all of these every day. That means you are giving your babies everything they need.
Stability – they have you, a home, their bedroom, food, loving arms to be cuddled in and love.
Connection – they have your smile, your touch, the knowledge that they form part of a family and they have love.
Routine – don’t get lost in this one because babies do not have a routine as we know it but they do have your face every day and clean nappies when they need them. Older children have routine of meal times, school or nursery and the knowledge that they get stories and cuddles every night at bed time.
Play – lose yourself in play too. Play can mean running through fallen leaves in the park, colouring, watching Paw Patrol, jumping in puddles and tickling until they cry with laughter and love.
Laughter – laugh through play, laugh at tea time, tell really bad jokes, wiggle your bottom (I still do this!), pull funny faces, sing and dance until your baby explodes into giggles. Let yourself laugh too. Laughter creates our love hormone – oxytocin.
Please take some pressure off yourself. Our babies and our children are resilient. Protect them by continuing to do what you do and also make sure that you protect yourself by being very kind and gentle to you – a little lowering of expectations is never a bad thing.
This will pass.